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Cultural Festival
Shay Turner performs at the 27th Annual Cultural Festival. (The Pantagraph/Carlos T. Miranda)

The fun-filled Cultural Festival Weekend returns to Miller Park in Bloomington Aug. 19 to 21, continuing an exciting celebration and outdoor festival that has been a community staple for 32 years.

The festival's primary purpose is to promote and foster appreciation for a variety of cultures through entertainment and educational activities. It's also a forum for other community organizations to promote and conduct positive activities for civic, patriotic, educational and social purposes. It is further intended to provide good, wholesome, fun activities and entertainment in a facility atmosphere.

The free festival is a wonderful weekend with a little bit of something for everyone. One of the main treats for those with an appetite is access to several food vendors with offerings visitors can't resist. The food vendor lineup provides everything from the traditional festival fare of corndogs and elephant ears to deep fried ice cream.

Another festival highlight is the main stage entertainment, featuring nonstop performances and activities throughout the day.

New this year

This year, in addition to the variety of musical and dance performances, State Farm Bank will sponsor an onstage Game Show with the complete set-up you typically see on TV. The theme and questions will promote financial literacy and the contestants will have an opportunity to win some great prizes -- with everyone likely learning a thing or two about personal finances. The Boys & Girls Club celebrity dunk tank, always a crowd favorite, also returns this year.

Another addition this year will be a Family Health Fair that will provide both free screenings and information and activities to promote health and fitness. The health fair is a collaboration among the local alumni chapters of the divine nine fraternities and sororities.

There's more

The lineup of talent is will be an exciting mix this year, ranging from a little bit of country to

the down home blues of local favorite, Steve the Harp. The Children's Village is another big hit with both parents and youngsters. The village is a special kid zone area filled with fun activities and crafts, a big bounce house and face painting by the Zoo Lady.

Speaking of the zoo, Miller Park Zoo will provide a special on-site petting zoo for the festival, rotating a variety of critters throughout the day.

So, come join us for a weekend of great fun and make Cultural Festival something you will certainly want to attend every year.

Jones is program coordinator of Cultural Festival.

Get cultured

What: 32nd Cultural Festival Weekend

When: August 19-21

Highlights: Food, fun, dance, music

Cost: Free

More Info: Visit, or contact Tony Jones at 309-242-4049 or email him at


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